Cardiovascular health disparities: a systematic review of health care interventions

Med Care Res Rev. 2007 Oct;64(5 Suppl):29S-100S. doi: 10.1177/1077558707305416.


Racial and ethnic disparities in cardiovascular health care are well documented. Promising approaches to disparity reduction are increasingly described in literature published since 1995, but reports are fragmented by risk, condition, population, and setting. The authors conducted a systematic review of clinically oriented studies in communities of color that addressed hypertension, hyperlipidemia, physical inactivity, tobacco, and two major cardiovascular conditions, coronary artery disease and heart failure. Virtually no literature specifically addressed disparity reduction. The greatest focus has been African American populations, with relatively little work in Hispanic, Asian, and Native American populations. The authors found 62 interventions, 27 addressing hypertension, 9 lipids, 18 tobacco use, 8 physical inactivity, and 7 heart failure. Only 1 study specifically addressed postmyocardial infarction care. Data supporting the value of registries, multidisciplinary teams, and community outreach were found across several conditions. Interventions addressing care transitions, using telephonic outreach, and promoting medication access and adherence merit further exploration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / therapy*
  • Ethnicity
  • Healthcare Disparities*
  • Humans
  • Minority Groups
  • Outcome Assessment, Health Care
  • Quality Assurance, Health Care
  • Quality of Health Care
  • United States